Datuk Dr Ir Mohd Abdul Karim Abdullah

Follow our exclusive interview with Serba Dinamik Holdings Bhd managing director and chief executive officer Datuk Dr Ir Mohd Abdul Karim Abdullah regarding the company’s plans to reinforce its local presence through the construction of Bintulu Integrated Energy Hub (BIEH) in Tanjung Kidurong, Bintulu, with investments worth a total of RM300 million.

Q: Could you speak about the involvement of Serba Dinamik Group Berhad (SDGB) in BIEH?

A: Plans to develop BIEH, which is wholly owned by SDGB, began four years ago after getting approval from the board members. So far, we have successfully completed the overall physical work on the facility.

We have invested RM300 million to develop the hub on a 30-acre site in Tanjung Kidurong. It will house the MRO (maintenance repair and overhaul) facility as well as IRM (inspection, repair and maintenance) centre of excellence. This will provide convenience to all companies and local industry players in Sarawak to repair and maintain their high-tech industrial machines.

What factors drove SDGB to get involved in the sector?

The lack of expertise and facilities to repair and maintain high-tech or heavy industrial machines in Sarawak has made many companies such as Malaysia LNG, Shell MDS, Asean Bintulu Fertilisers, Sarawak Energy and others to ship their machines outside of Sarawak, which we realise result in the outflow of money in large amounts.

Therefore, the company decided to create BIEH to help increase the economic growth of the state and Malaysia as a whole.

Why choose Bintulu to develop BIEH? Is it because Bintulu has been announced as a petrochemical hub by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg?

Serba Dinamik’s Bintulu Integrated Energy Hub

From the initial plan and looking at the company’s expertise and performance record, we are more into downstream activities (on-show) and at the same time the petrochemical hub also refers to on-show capabilities.

Why was it developed in Bintulu? It’s simple. Bintulu has many companies using heavy industrial machines. In addition, BIEH was also established to provide maintenance services for industrial machines in Samalaju.

Therefore, the location we chose incidentally is in line with Abang Johari’s mission in making Bintulu a petrochemical hub.

Will Serba Dinamik give priority to local workers?

Did you know that local workers are among the best employees in the world? Of course, priority will be given to them. Our extensive experience in doing work overseas has proven that local workers are among the best, and we often bring them to overseas projects. So far, we have received excellent feedback from past customers on the performance and capabilities of our local employees.

Therefore, I am confident that the company will not face any major problems in BIEH.

Datuk Dr Ir Mohd Abdul Karim Abdullah

What’s the percentage of local workers in BIEH?

We are targeting 80 percent local workers and 20 percent foreign. We have sent a group (first one) to undergo training in India and Italy. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, they were unable to complete the training.

India and Italy are the two countries that supply technical support and some of our equipment and machines are also imported from them.

For now, we plan to spend the rest of the training through online visuals, and once the country allows foreigners to enter the country, then we will bring in professionals from Italy to refine the readiness and preparation of the workforce at BIEH.

When is BIEH expected to operate?

For rotating equipment and static equipment (under MRO), they are expected to operate at the end of next month and the end of November, respectively. For full integrated fabrication capabilities, it will be operational by the end of next month.

What are SDGB’s tips on maintaining its position in the industry?

In providing domestic MRO services, we usually compete with Rimaco, a subsidiary of Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB), and at the same time, we also compete with TNB for other projects. For international projects, we compete with giant companies such as ITOS, General Electric and others.

SDGB is not afraid to compete because it is part of entrepreneurship. What is important is we must always be prepared to face the opponent in order to meet the needs of potential customers as well as maintain strong finances to continue to convince potential and existing customers.

An aerial view of Serba Dinamik’s Bintulu Integrated Energy Hub

What are your expectations for the BIEH project?

One of our goals is to create the country’s first MRO and IRM global centre of excellence, designed to serve the needs of the oil and gas as well as power generation industries in Malaysia.

With the in-house facilities and resources, the proposed centre of excellence will be a one-stop engineering solutions centre for the repair and maintenance of plants, facilities, machinery and equipment.

We also truly believe and are confident there is potential for Sarawak to emerge as a business energy hub in Malaysia.